3 Tips to Keep Your Customers in Love with You

Great Customer Service goes a long way. Image by Thad Zajdowicz. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL
Great Customer Service goes a long way. Image by Thad Zajdowicz. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL
Great Customer Service goes a long way. Image by Thad Zajdowicz. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL

As each January arrives, many businesses spend time reviewing their publicity and marketing campaigns for the year along with budgets. By February, they are knee-deep in their creative development or executing their plans. However, during the month of February, it’s a great idea to review your customer service strategies.

We have all heard it over and over again, it is costs more to gain a client than it is to keep an existing one spending with you. For this reason alone, a thorough look at what you’re currently doing for your customers is healthy to keep up your relationship with them. Below you will find three of our tips to help you keep your customers in love with you.

Tip #1:

Fulfill all of your initial promises made through advertising and in your proposals. If your advertisements indicated attentiveness to the client, then you must be open to all of their calls, catering to their desires and never missing an opportunity to fulfill a need before they realize there is one. If you promised cutting edge technology during your pitch or in your proposal, you must always provide them with the opportunity for the latest and greatest before your or their competitors can access it. Simple example, if you claim you make the best Cuban sandwich, you better be able to back it up with awards or recognition and perfection each time it’s made.

Tip #2

Always give something above and beyond what they were expecting to receive. People will rarely remember the normal things, but will more likely remember those pleasant unexpected ones. If you are a retailer, you can simply do this by packaging your items unlike your competitors during check out. You can offer to enter them into a surprise raffle for repeat shoppers. If you offer a service, pick one aspect of your service which may cost you little to nothing to offer. This shows you care above your bottom line and are willing to make sure theirs stays healthy.

Tip #3

Personalize your relationship. Collect your customers birthday month and send them well wishes. Ask questions about their work life or accomplishments. One of the easy ways to do so in the business-to-business industry is to request to connect with your clients on LinkedIn. This allows you to see any professional updates and gives you a chance to offer your congratulations to them. Depending on your business you can determine if it benefits you to know information about their spouse or child so you can celebrate in their personal joys too. However, be careful to not get too personal you end up in an emotional trap.

There are many ways to help your business stand out and to keep your customers in love with your brand. And just as they say you should show love on more days besides just Valentine’s Day, you should review these three tips throughout the year. This will help keep the relationship strong and it very difficult to break.

What are your thoughts? Have any other tips to keep customers in love with businesses?

Leave your comment below. You may be featured in a future post.

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Above Promotions is a full service publicity, digital marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace. From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations. Visit http://www.abovepromotions.com today.

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Ebony T. Grimsley is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the author of “Because You’re Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation” which is sold on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other stores and a contributor to various media outlets.

 

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Facebook Graph Search: Focus On These Two Things Now

Mark Zuckerberg introduces Graph Search (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife). Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL. 2013
Mark Zuckerberg introduces Graph Search (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife). Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL. 2013

 

Images and friends can truly take their social connection and interests to the next level with the introduction of Facebook’s Graph Search. It’s the chance to group friends of like interests through a search. You can skip having to post as a status, “Anyone gone to XYZ restaurant yet?” As an avid user of Yelp when looking for new places, wow if this doesn’t provide for the possibility of me staying on Facebook to find feedback. Of course as with any change to Facebook, you should be concerned with the level of privacy on your personal accounts. In fact this would be a good time to review some of your older pictures, pages you have liked and even places you’ve checked in to. If you’re concerned about a few people who may be too interested in your activities, you may want to consider deleting them or preventing them from seeing certain things. (Do not take your privacy lightly concerning Graph Search. Read this post by Gizmodo.)

While I, like other marketers, wait to be granted access for the beta testing, there are two things for sure that none of us who manage brand pages have to wait for – improving the customer experience and images used for branding.

Every single organization with a brand page needs to immediately think about how good and bad experiences will affect your business. People will be able to easily see informal reviews and pictures of your place within their group of friends.  So honesty in advertising and word of mouth has just been amplified. You will need to focus on if you are really delivering the pleasant experience you have been sharing through your marketing efforts. This update is as though Yelp just entered Facebook. Like TripAdvisor just sat down with your potential customers. As though the Better Business Bureau just advertised any complaints. Partial statements about an experience with your business just took front stage and you must do what you can to make sure the audience applauds.

As for the images uploaded on your page, just how great are they? Or how many are original to your brand? It’s easy to take the economic or lazy way out and solely snap pictures from your camera phone and upload to your page. Perhaps a couple of pictures in low lighting may be acceptable every now then to represent a live occurrence, but that cannot be your only source for representing your product(s). Adding images that are not related to your services may just be helping out someone else more than yourself.

Look at it from this angle. Once Graph Search rolls out, when your images are grouped with ones from camera phones from users, how will you stand out? Will your images be compelling enough to get the user to click on the image and visit your page and purchase from you? I mean that is the end goal of using any social media platform, right? To entice a sale. This isn’t to negate the fact that some things will look ok from a high quality camera phones, but this is to say that you should consider using a professional grade camera or a photographer to properly represent your products. Treating your social media page as some impromptu dumping ground of information and images should cease sooner than later.

Oh Graph Search. It sounds as though you’re going to challenge the small businesses to look big. It seems as though you’re going to make everyone focus on quality service. This could wreak havoc on the lazy business owner or social media managers. One place for people to find out from their trusted peers where to go and where to run like crazy from in the opposite direction. Oh Graph Search, you may definitely be the enemy of doing “just enough”.

What do you think? Are you ready for Graph Search? Are there other things to consider now before its release?

Please leave your thoughts and comments below. They may be used in the future for another article.

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Above Promotions is a full service publicity, marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace. From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations. Visit http://www.abovepromotions.com today.

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Ebony T. Grimsley is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the recent author of “Because You’re Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation.” To find out more information on the book, please visit http://www.abovepromotions.com or purchase online at Amazon, Booktango and other online bookstores.

To Honor or Not Honor a Coupon

To Honor a Coupon or Not? Photo Courtesy of Frieda Tucker. Above Promotions Company, Tampa, FL 2012
To Honor a Coupon or Not? Photo Courtesy of Frieda Tucker. Above Promotions Company, Tampa, FL 2012

A recent experience by someone close to me really sent my marketing mind in a tizzy. I was in shock to see how even a larger “small” business with thousands of customers could handle a situation poorly.

Ready to hear what perplexed me? For purposes of this story, let’s call the main character Jon.

One Sunday afternoon Jon located a coupon for an oil change on a national coupon website for a local Toyota car dealership. Jon downloaded and printed the coupon. He immediately called the dealership to make an early morning appointment to obtain the service on that upcoming Wednesday. After a lengthy process of taking his contact and car information, the appointment was set.

Upon arriving early that Wednesday, the personnel in the service department refused to honor the coupon. Although the coupon had one rate and no stipulations on it but the expiration date, the employee at the dealership stated they could not offer the rate because his car was not a Toyota. The deal was only for Toyota cars. A big detail that the marketing department failed to include when submitting the promotion to the national coupon website. Jon eventually left without the oil change. The dealership lost their business and those who heard the story.

This incident really baffled me. With no restrictions on the coupon, nor the appointment setter asking anything regarding the coupon, you would think on customer service alone, the dealership would honor the coupon. Yet they chose not to, or should I say the personnel Jon spoke to opted to not offer it.

Is this coupon out in cyberspace to bait people to come into their dealership? Or does the dealership need to work on their customer service levels? Or maybe those in the marketing department need to articulate the rules of the promotion? Perhaps it is all three.

I pose this question to all of my business owners, would you honor or not honor a coupon that your organization submitted for a promotion regardless if you failed to include restrictions on it?

Please share your thoughts below. It could be used for an upcoming article.

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Above Promotions is a full service publicity, marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace. From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations. Visit http://www.abovepromotions.com today.

********************

Ebony T. Grimsley is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the recent author of “Because You’re Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation.” To find out more information on the book, please visit http://www.abovepromotions.com or purchase online at Amazon, Booktango and other online bookstores.